February.

For those of you who know me, I may have (definitely would have if you know me) mentioned that I have spent the start of this year injured. Having written out a training plan that was to take me from January to July, I missed 5 weeks of training due to¬†Iliotibial Band Syndrome. You can google that, but anyone who knows sport (particularly running), will know that it is two things – bloody painful and very hard to get rid of. Now to say I am not still injured would be a lie, it still hurts occasionally and I have a support that takes the pain away during running. But time is important and I have to get training otherwise I won’t achieve my targets.

So that’s, essentially, January removed. My first training race was the Old Deer Park Half Marathon, in Richmond. This was carefully programmed in to have 6 weeks training before it, to ensure I was fit. I had 1 week post injury, so it was a great marker for me. Having run a grand total of 25km this year, I entered it with a limp target of competing it in 1h45 minutes. Now it wasn’t a great run, the weather on the morning was fine. The issue was that the past 48 hours was spent as the end of the world as every inch of water ever to evaporate from the sea decided to fall on London. The sections of the race that were on the Thames Tow Path & over grass was horrendous. Every bit of rhythm you got yourself into was disturbed by a puddle or a particularly squelchy bit of mud, but I set myself off. I said to myself before the race that I would set off at a high speed, and see how far it took me until I couldn’t maintain it, and then drop off.

Typically, I started off quicker than I wanted to. Be it adrenaline, or that it was unacceptable that the old guy in front of me was going to beat me (for the record, he didn’t). I lowered my pace slightly after 7km to a settled speed and decided that I would ensure I ran that for as long as I could. It turns out, my base fitness is excellent. (Not bragging).

I completed the half marathon in 1h32.58, a PB (my second half marathon…) and for what little training I had been able to achieve, I was delighted. The downside is that I now have to smash the half marathon in March to show that my training over the next 4 weeks has been worthwhile! The last week has been stop start. Monday’s swimming didn’t happen due to train failure (this will probably be a regular feature of this blog…), work killed my Wednesday run and workmates killed my Friday run. I hope to tick off a short run and a 15-18km run this weekend to ensure that I have at least done something, and then on to next weeks plan. I’ll check back in a couple of weeks to let you know how I am doing, and I’ll also, if anybody is really statistically keen, throw in some of my training stats so you can (hopefully) see the improvement in 4-6 weeks time.

Thanks for reading.